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"The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible"

~ Anonymous

Tea Time with Liv

Coach for success

You join a company to build a business. With that business you come to build a team. Now that you have a team, what do you do?

Educate, motivate, support.

Be the cheerleader. Cheer on all successes no matter how big or small. Recognition is a big key in team success. When a team member achieves something, show your appreciation with incentives, perks, and gifts. Also acknowledge the success publicly so that he/she feels recognized and appreciated. Post it on your team blog, business blog, business group. This can be the best booster to strive for further success.

I have a consultant who has a tough team. Low participation. She emails them all ever month at least once a month. No matter how little they participate. Little by little they are coming out of the woodwork and participating. Just because they are timid and want to stand back to see how things go, coach them anyways. Include them. This will entice them.

They are part of your team no matter what they do. It is your job as their team leader to coach them to success. This is why you earn commission on team sales. Its compensation for taking care of your team and assisting them as they succeed. They all deserve your time. Team members should never have to earn your time or gain so much in sales. You are to give each and every team member your time regardless until such a time comes they are no longer part of your team.

There are great individuals in great teams and the team leader's job is to appreciate that all team members bring something unique and valuable to the table. Every team member needs to know that they are important and contribute value to the team. This is regardless how significant the value is. All value is priceless. Treat it as such.

Many join a company but stand back to see how things run rather than jump in with both feet. It doesn't mean they aren't interested. They are adsorbing all that is put out there.and see how things run. They just do it in a different way than we expect.

You may have a super star among the quiet group. Don't let them smolder. Keep them motivated and wait for them to shine. It can happen when you least expect it. It may happen in an unexpected way. Quiet does not equal uninterested.

Build a website dedicated to your team. Post team news, recognize top performers, top supporters, new team members, hold contests. Hold training and team meetings. On one of the pages on your team site, put a chat room. Go to xat.com (personally recommend due to the fun nature), parachat.com, or addonchat.com, and get one for free. Free websites such as webs.com (formerly freewebs.com) are not just for creating a site for sales. Choose and use the features that work best such as the event calendar, discussion boards, blogs. Its about thinking outside the box.

If you want the best from your team members, it's vital that you give them what they need to perform well. Offer tips on getting those sales. Teach team members how to close a sale. Distribute articles to building and succeeding in their business. Create flyers and share them. You need to educate not expect they already know it all.

Keep your relationships open and honest when you are team building. You will encourage activities within your team. This will also mean that all of your team members as well as yourself accept positive as well as constructive feedback. Encourage feedback. When giving constructive feedback always follow a negative with a positive. With positive feedback stay positive. Don't throw in the "but". When you receive feedback, accept it without being defensive or angry no matter if the approach was angry.

Successful team building is not about recruiting perfect people. You as the team leader can make a huge difference to who you have already, by the actions and influences that you have yourself - and create a powerful team which can rise up and lead your business to much bigger things.

The quickest way to change behavior is to reinforce the effort initially, not the results. Profit follows performance, and performance follows effort. If team members put forth the effort you desire, they will create the results you want, and they need your on-the-spot coaching to adjust their performance to work more effectively.

Lead by example. Set the bar for where you expect your team to meet and exceed your success. You can't expect to build a solid successful team if you yourself can not reach a level of success others want to achieve. Put into motion all that you push. Whenever possible have a team member shadow you. Take them on recruiting meetings, home parties, fairs, etc. Hands on can be powerful. Some do better by watching and doing.

As a team leader, coaching is your number one job. This is not for when you have time or "feel like it." If you are too busy or unable to provide the tools to your team, you need to rethink building a team. Never build a team right off. Learn your company, your products, your field, your competition.

As a team leader you must know your team thoroughly. You must know the strengths and weaknesses of each member of your team. A team leader has to work with the team that they have recruited. Each sales person has certain strengths and weaknesses. Capitalize on those strengths. Utilize previous job experience. Know among the team members who works well with who. Pair them. Use your experienced team members to mentor new team members. Ultimately you want them to perform better and having a coherently working team is always good to achieve the sales goals of the individual and the organization.

As a team leader you can be the friend, adviser, and guide of your team. Encourage them to open up with you and discuss their personal matters with you on a one-on-one basis. Try to provide friendly shoulder when they need it. Offer solutions. Encourage them to keep moving forward. Knowing their personal joys and troubles you can be a part of their lives and they would trust you more as a leader. This will help you in getting things done. Also it will be easier for you to understand that the reason for a team members poor sales during a given time frame are the challenges in their personal life.

When somebody on the team is not reaching their sales goals be gentle with them. The worst thing would be to single them out in front of everybody. Try to find out why they are not meeting goals. Ask to meet and talk to you one-on-one if possible and find out what has been holding them back. Provide solutions. Point out where they can improve and give them pointers. Be gentle and firm with these team members. Allow them enough chance to improve. A little compassion and understanding goes a long way as a team leader and can help your sales team to get back on track to sales success.

Don't ignore anyone in your team. If they are meeting and exceeding, keep encouraging to meet and exceed new goals. Just because they are successful does not mean they don't need you. If they are floundering, take them step by step even if that means starting over.

As a team leader never stop learning. You do not want to be stagnant in your own success. Keep reaching higher and never settle. Don't hold back secrets. If you have something that will help your team members succeed, offer it to them. Why keep something to yourself because you don't want others to use it. Your knowledge is only valuable if you share it. If it is kept tucked away in your pocket, it is useless.

Watch how you speak to team members. If you are intimidating, aggressive, rude, you will not bring out the best in your team. You will likely create a team that will dwindle in size or disappear all together. Don't discuss how you will only help those who deserve your time. It devalues others. Word it differently. Instead say you will offer certain meetings, training, one on one, etc to anyone who willing to utilize your time.

Reality is not all team members are going to want to make good money. Some join companies to take advantage of the discount. Some want a hobby. Others just want some pocket change. The rest want to build a business. Be realistic. At the same time don't look down on anyone for their desire to join. Your job is not to judge. Your job as their team leader is to support, motivate, educate.

Coaching to success doesn't mean leading a team by the hand to do it all. Its about supplying your team with tools to succeed and supporting them along the way. You can't do it for them and you should not be expected to do so.

Building a team is not sweet talking a potential recruit into joining them letting them fend for themselves. Sitting back and watching the money come rolling in is not going to happen. OK maybe there are a few times it does but this is certainly not the norm. You are paid a small compensation of a percentage of their sales because you coach them to succeed. Earn it. Teach them. Support them. Help them succeed. If they succeed, you succeed.

Coaching your team is work. It is rewarding work not to be taken lightly. Take the time to research and provide the tools to your team. Take the time to get to know your team. The time you invest will be worth the work.

Olivia Vidal
© 2009


AudreyO said...

Hi Olivia. I'm Audrey. I found your blog listed on the message board at momblogs.com I love this post. Thanks for sharing.

Olivia - http://sochicbagboutique.com said...

I love that site. There are some great blogs available. Thank you for visiting. I hope you visit again.

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